Here I am!

Here I am… of course, I’ve been here before.  I’ve always been here.  Exploring my relationship with technology, media, machines, systems…

What an interesting first seminar meeting we had – those of us forming a new community of learners in the “New Media” development seminar.  I left with my head spinning, to be honest.  I was thinking about technology in my life in a very different way – some things I hadn’t thought about in years, and some things I’ve just never thought about in quite this way before.

I walked away reminded of how central a role technology has played in my life – throughout my life.  And feeling slightly amazed by it, actually.  The first home computer entered our residence when I was about 5 years old.  This sounds positively stunted in today’s terms, but the year was 1978.  The computer was an Apple II

The AppleII: My family's first home computer...

My family’s first home computer…

(check out these impressive stats).  We ran programs off of a tape drive – reel-to-reel cassette tapes!  I played “Lemonade Stand”, “Olympic Decathlon” and “Typing Tutor” – all programs controlled with only the keyboard as a user input, displayed on a screen that could make six colors.  I don’t think I was even aware, as I am now, that there wasn’t one of these machines in every house.  By age 8, I could type about 45 wpm and was programming in Basic.  I realize now how this early exposure to technology has positively impacted the way I think about and approach nearly every facet of life.

This reflection has already inspired insights, as well as at least 3.5 dozen other questions!  I realize that my early-life exposure to and adoption of technology has created an ease with technology that I have taken for granted.  It has, at least in part, inspired my consistent approach to problem resolution: “there has to be a way to do that.”  With technology as my “go-to” for research and understanding, it’s so easy to find there often is already a “way to do that.” I’ve found that being able to quickly demonstrate and implement a resolution inspires belief in others.  If “the way” truly hasn’t been discovered or invented yet, technology makes it immensely easier to do so.  All this makes me wonder how my own children – who’ve not known life without DVRs, iPads and smartphones – are being shaped by technology, and my approach to it, already…

It has also made me wonder about my dad – and I’ve already sent him a list of several questions…  Help me understand…?  What propensities, interests, curiosities, etc. made him a technophile and early adopter?  (He still is today, by the way.)  Why didn’t the unknown or lack of mainstream acceptance stand in his way?  What possibilities did he see?  The conversation that will undoubtedly follow this weekend has me giddy with anticipation.

More to come…